Cavapoos are amazing companion dogs. They’re soft, sweet, and happy to help-meaning they love being with their people more than anything in the world.
This is wonderful because it means that they’ll want to spend all of their time with you, but it can also be a problem if you know you’ll need to leave your pup alone for a while.
How do Cavapoos React to Being Left Alone?
Cavapoos naturally crave attention and affection from their owners. They suffer from separation anxiety. They were originally bred as companion animals and take after their Cavalier relatives in that respect.
They’re very cuddly and will follow you around just to keep you in sight. These dogs are more than happy to fall asleep on your lap while you watch TV or go on walks with you through the neighborhood.
Because they were bred to be constant companions, Cavapoos don’t react well to being left alone. Many of these pups experience severe separation anxiety and may feel as if they’ve been abandoned, which can make socialization with people and other dogs much harder later on.
Can You Leave a Cavapoo in a Crate Alone?
One of the most common ways pet owners keep their dogs from causing any mischief when left home alone is to keep them in a crate.
As long as the crate is big enough (allowing room for some pacing and full stretching), it’s enough for many dog breeds to be comfortable while their owners are away for short periods.
Unfortunately, the Cavapoo dog breed does not do well when kenneled long term. While it may stop them from destroying your things, the relatively small space causes more stress on top of being left alone.
They are excellent with crate training – but long term lock up is not a viable option for a Cavapoo puppy or adult dog.
Additionally, if they have an accident, which these dogs are prone to when they’re upset, then they’ll be left to sit in it the entire time you’re gone, which can cause medical issues.
Keeping a small transport crate for trips to the vet might be helpful. Still, if you leave your Cavapoo in their crate too often, you can expect to see severe behavioral issues show up and a worsening in their dog separation anxiety. I’d highly recommend against it.
How to Tell if Your Cavapoo is Stressed from Being Alone
Every dog or Cavoodle puppy is different, so I can’t say for certain what your dog’s signs will be. There are a few benchmarks, though, that are pretty hard to miss.
- Whining and barking
- Chewing on things that aren’t meant for them to chew on, such as furniture
- General destructive behaviors like digging and scratching at furniture and doors
- Pacing or running
- Relieving themselves inside the house even when well trained
- Anxious or aggressive behaviors like growling and snarling
- Otherwise hyper behavior
If you recognize any of these signs in your dog after returning home, they’re probably experiencing stress even from short trips.
Try not to enact harsh punishments on your dog, such as yelling or rubbing their face in a mess, as that can make episodes more frequent and intense and may lead to trauma or make separation anxiety worse.
Steps to Leaving Your Cavapoo Alone
Most experts agree that, with the proper training, a Cavapoo can eventually be left alone for short periods. They may not enjoy it, but that doesn’t mean it has to be stressful or detrimental to them in the long run.
Here are some easy steps you can take to ensure that your Cavapoo is safe when they’re home alone.
Train Your Cavapoo Early
Cavapoos are intelligent dogs that love to learn and explore, which makes training them fairly easy. It’s best to train and socialize your puppy as early as possible-most pups can start training at around six weeks old.
Ensure that your puppy is trained to relieve themselves in a specific space, like a pad inside or outside. This can start at around eight weeks. Start by making sure they are comfortable with the space they’ll be using.
Then, whenever they display signs that they need to go-shifting, sniffing around, and circling-bring them to their space and keep them there until they go. Eventually, they’ll get the idea and start going there by themselves.
You should also make sure they’re trained against gnawing on furniture or chewing up blankets, wires, or other dangerous items.
Start with Short Trips
Try not to leave your puppy alone for more than two hours at a time, and never leave them alone for longer than six hours. When you leave, make sure you’re preparing your dog to be alone by simply saying goodbye, and then leaving without making any fuss.
Start with very short trips, and scale them up by increments so that your dog gets comfortable with the idea of you not being around. Always be sure to properly reward your dog for good behavior alone by giving them lots of attention and the occasional treat.
This will build up a positive association with being alone.
Reduce Stress as Much as Possible
Rather than kenneling your Cavapoo, you might try creating a designated space for them. This can be done with a baby gate to a specific room (such as a bathroom) or a small fence that can section off a portion of one room.
If you find that you need to leave your Cavapoo alone, they should have easy access to a few things to reduce stress and keep them healthy.
Do not leave your Cavapoo outside while you’re away, as this exposes them to changes in weather and, because of their small size, to potential predators. You should also make sure that, at least early on, anything you don’t want to be damaged is either out of reach or well covered before you leave.
One good trick is to leave your television or radio on while you’re out. Having the house be completely silent can be distressing to some dogs, so giving them something to watch or listen to, as silly as it sounds, is an excellent way to keep their stress levels down.
Alternatives to Leaving Your Cavapoo Alone
If possible, you’ll want to avoid leaving your Cavapoo completely alone for any longer than a few hours, as even when properly trained and provided for, a dog cannot be left alone for a full day or even multiple days without experiencing some kind of distress. There are a few alternatives you can consider.
Find a Dog Sitter
Dog sitters mean that your puppy can be in the comfort of their own home with someone to cuddle and receive attention from, even if that isn’t you. While I would rather trust my pet to a good friend or family member, there are also plenty of sites you can visit to find a solid pet sitter with more reliable qualifications.
Places like Care.com, Rover, and PetSitter.com (no affiliation with us) are all great to start looking. They offer full profiles of each sitter, including their experience and rate. You can also try private marketplaces like Facebook and Craigslist.
If you choose to do that, though, make sure you find reputable reviews from previous clients to verify what they advertise.
Adopt or Rescue a Second Dog
Two is company! Consider adopting a second dog (or see if you can find a Cavapoo rescue).
Dogs are social – and getting a second dog can provide them with company. Be careful and mindful that this still means you need spend time with your Cavapoo (or any Poodle mix dog) as they crave attention from humans in particular.
Consider Doggy Daycare
Doggie Daycares are a fantastic alternative to kennelling. Many of these facilities offer plenty of space to run and play, as well as a meal plan and professional supervision. They also allow your dog to socialize with other animals.
Most doggie daycares offer half-day and full-day programs, as well as different programs for different sized dogs. Be sure to do your research on your daycare of choice, and let them know of any special medical needs your dog has well in advance so that they can be prepared to handle them.
Find a Dog Walker
If you’re not keen on the whole doggie daycare experience, you can try hiring a dog walker. Similar to a sitter, a walker can provide your pup with attention and affection.
Like a daycare center, however, they also frequently offer the opportunity for socialization, which can help your dog’s behavior over time.
Dog walkers are a happy medium between daycare and sitters and can be found in many of the same places that sitters can. Just be sure you know which other dogs will be on the same route so that you know your dog will be comfortable around them.
Cavapoos are wonderful companions that make life a lot more fun. Inevitably, though, they’re going to have to spend at least a little time alone, and that can be scary for a little dog!
As a pet parent we know that our pets are important and that they deserve the world, but when life calls us away from them, and we know they’re going to be stressed, it can get hard to do what we need to.
Fortunately, as long as you train them early, keep their stress down, and keep the trips short, I’m sure your Cavapoo (and their floppy ears) will be more than happy to greet you at the end of the day.